Today's guest post comes from Rebecca of Here Come the Girls. Today Rebecca is sharing a simple yet FUN activity that I am certain any child would love! Painting a box! Welcome Rebecca!
3 kids + boxes + paint = fun!
Do your kids like playing in cardboard boxes? Do they throw aside the toy and spend hours playing with the packaging? Mine do! It's so annoying when you've spent hours choosing a gift and then they prefer the box. Then on the plus side it is amazing that something free can provide hours of entertainment.
The twins are two and love playing in boxes and their second favourite activity is painting. What better thing to keep them busy on a sunny day than to combine the two things and paint a box? I love this activity because it is so simple and cheap but it really kept them happy for hours.
First we mixed the colours. There are lots of adverts at the moment for a pretend paint pot toy which teaches children about colour mixing. It always makes me feel a bit sad - how can you really learn what happens unless you do it for real? I know a lot of people hate mess but when you go outside to paint there is so little mess - it only takes a minute to clear up - especially if you are a bit more sensible than me and remember to put down newspaper. I always get half way through an activity and suddenly think about how to make it easier to tidy.
The girls decided to paint their boxes, red, green and blue. They did a really good job. I gave them large paintbrushes used for decorating the house. This was just a fun activity so it was more about the process than getting a good end result. It was a nice change for me. After years of teaching, I find it hard to just let them play and experiement without trying to steer them to an end goal and this was great for that - although I did help by going over a few blank areas - I just can't help it sometimes.
It was so interesting giving them such a large canvas to work on. They could be really free with their painting and made such interesting results. I would love to do this again with large card or canvas and make something we can keep - see, I can't help myself - I'm still thinking of an end product
The other thing I loved was that all the girls worked together - as there wasn't an end result there wasn't something to spoil - which prevented the usual arguments. There was lots of space outside so they didn't bump into each other and I gave them each a pot of paint and a brush so they didn't have to share.
While the boxes dried the girls enjoyed washing up all the play things. It was great to let them play with some cold water after all that hard work. The paint made the water turn some really pretty colours
When the paint was dry they could play in them again. The boxes were transformed from a lick of paint into anything the kids wanted them to be - a line of cars, houses or a roaring steam train. Amazing for the cost of a few pots of paint.
Rebecca is a teacher turned stay-at-home Mom to 3 beautiful girls (a five year old and two year old twins) and blogs at Here Come the Girls which is full of crafts, cooking and learning. Follow her on facebook or twitter.